While some of the details are different, there are some parts of your story that seem somewhat similar to my own. I was in triad that was supposed to be irrevocable. However, after a couple of months of moving forward, the wife (who was my long time friend) started having emotional problems with the situation. We went through a litany from her of, "if you'll only do this one thing, I think I'll be okay." Only problem was, she never was. It was always one more thing, and within a short time, he and I lost everything personal and intimate.
He kept thinking he could reassure her and we would regain what we had lost. I was pretty sure we wouldn't, but I wanted to believe so I stayed far longer than I probably should have.
I'm wondering in your case, if although the wife is probably genuinely trying, she just can't get used to it, and is afraid to say so.
My gf was also petrified of anyone finding out about the three of us. Very worried about what other people would think. I'm convinced this feeling played as huge a role in her inability to cope as anything else.
In any case, I can relate to having my needs put on hold like you. We're all still friends because we want it that way, but I've been out of it for about 3 months now. I expect that I will always have the grief of losing him, because he and I love one another very much, but also the life I thought the three of us would have together. I'm moving on slowly. It's tough. But at least my life is back within my control instead of being at the mercy of a person who just can't get it together.
You're right, you can't live life like you are. It's time for them to understand your position and either move forward or admit they can't.